By OkaDonga Gumbi
Mamelodi Sundowns goalkeeper, Kennedy Mweene was the hero when he not only saved four penalties but also scored one himself.
Mweene became the hero as he helped Sundowns to a 2-1 win and advance to the semi-finals of the MTN8 – the only cup that has eluded Masandawana.
“Eish, tough one… But as you know it was the first game of the season. It was tough and you see it in the legs of the guys,” said Mweene after the game.
“But we kept soldiering on and look, I wasn’t happy. No one on the team was happy with the way we gave away the goals.
“We just gave away the 2-0 (lead) and they came back. We made it difficult for ourselves. But at the end of the day, you must understand that it was the first game and everyone was on the edge.
“Physically we are not yet there and it was a tough game, but congrats to everyone… we put up a performance. It wasn’t easy.
“Yeah, next is the league game. We have to forget this, it has passed. At least we started on a positive note, we have won the game.
“When we go back to training everyone will be in good spirits. We have another tough one against AmaZulu,” added Mweene.
Sundowns begin their DStv Premiership title defense against AmaZulu who were their closest chasers last season.
Mweene says winning the MTN8 is a personal goal he has set himself as that is the only medal he doesn’t have in his impressive collection.
“I have been at Sundowns for a long time, this is my eighth year. We have never won the MTN8. It has always either we fall on the first hurdle or fail in the semi-finals.
“I just hope.. I pray to God (that we win it). This is the only trophy I have not won in South Africa and I am praying that we go all the way and win it. And I know and believe we can win it.”
Asked about his Man-of-the-Match performance, Mweene said individual awards are just a side bonus and he never sets out for them.
“Look, as a player, you don’t play to win individual awards. You play to help the team, and for me, I was just helping the team.
“I just wanted to contribute and this is just a plus for me. I want to say to the guys who scored the penalties, we needed that. We need the MTN8, I personally need it.”
On the penalties he saved, Mweene said: “As a goalkeeper, I always watch how the strikers take penalties…
“With (Daniel) Cardoso, I knew that 99.9% he goes that way. It was then easy for me. If he tries to go the other side, he misses it.